How many days for a citytrip to Stockholm?

Posted in Stockholm by

You ‘ve made the decision: your next city trip will be Stockholm! The planning can begin. How many days should you stay in Stockholm? There is no clear answer to this. Much depends on your interests. Let’s assume that it is your first time in Stockholm. With the tips below we will together find out how many days in Stockholm you should plan when you are visiting the city for the first time.

Stockholm is a relatively small capital, but there is a lot to see. I recommend to visit as much as possible on foot. If you also want to visit some attractions just outside of the city, I would suggest taking public transport. Public transport in Stockholm is well organized. 

Stockholm

How long in Stockholm?

Personally I would recommend going for at least 3 nights so that you have at least 3 full days in Stockholm. 3 days really seem like the minimum to enjoy the various aspects of the city. With 4 full days you will have some extra space to see something of the surroundings or to do everything at a slower pace.

Choose which islands you want to visit and make sure to reserve at least half a day for each neighbourhood, count a few extra hours if you like to visit museums. An absolute must see is the Vasa Museum. Reserve half a day to discover the museum at your leisure. I have been there 4 times myself and am still discovering interesting facts!

Stockholm is one third water and one third green. Nature is never far away. Just wandering around and enjoying Stockholm is the best thing I know. Save time for wandering and relaxing. Laid back is a word that fits nicely with Stockholm. Don’t overfill your program, but make sure you also have time for fika!

That little extra for your city trip in Stockholm

Would you like to make a trip to the archipelago? Then plan a city trip of at least 4 full days. The archipelago of Stockholm has 30,000 islands so plenty of choice. The nearest islands, Fjäderholmarna, are about 20 minutes sailing.

Other interesting trips in the Stockholm area (and for which you would like to plan an extra day) are Skogskyrkogården, Birka, Sigtuna and Drottningholm Castle  (the castle where the Swedish royals live). And if you would like to visit Skansen or Gröna Lund, I would reserve an extra day for that too and thus prolonging your city trip.

Only 1 day in Stockholm?

Do you only have 1 day in Stockholm? No worries! Limit yourself to the highlights. Here you will find an example program if you can only spend 1 day in Stockholm. Bet you would like to return soon?

Let’s face it: a city trip to Stockholm is always a good idea. I have been there so often – of course I have a few favorite addresses that I like to return to but I also try to discover new places all the time.

So, how many days you should spend in Stockholm is not easily to be decided. In 3 days you will have enough time to see the highlights. If you want to see a little more, go for 5 days. You have 10 days? Then you will probably still not even get bored with all the tips on this site.

How many days would you recommend for a city trip to Stockholm?

Recipe: Toast Skagen

Posted in Swedish Food by

It is one of my favorite dishes on the Swedish menu cards. To my own surprise, Ikea still does not serve this in their restaurants. It is something that you can easily prepare at home. I’d like to share an authentic Swedish recipe to make your own Toast Skagen or Skagenröra.

How do you make Toast Skagen?

Recipe Toast Skagen - Skagenröra

Ingredients Toast Skagen

    • 500 grams of pink (peeled) shrimps
    • 1 red onion
    • Some sprigs of fresh dill
    • 100 grams of mayonnaise
    • 100 grams of sour cream
    • Swedish sandwiches (or a thick slice of bread to toast)
    • Lemon juice
    • For the finishing touch: sprig of dill, fish eggs (faux caviar) and a slice of lemon

 How to?

Chop the red onion and the dill. Mix the sour cream, the mayonnaise, the onion, the dill and the lemon juice. Add the shrimp. Roast the sandwiches.

Place a sandwich on a plate and put a generous amount of shrimp salad on top of it. Finish with half a spoonful of rump eggs, a sprig of dill and a small piece of lemon. Tasty!

Recipe Toast Skagen

P.S. In London and craving for Swedish food? Try the Toast Skagen at Aquavit!

Hellasgården in winter

Posted in Stockholm by

Hellasgården is a popular spot in the Nacka Nature Reserve, just outside of Stockholm. A lot going on in Hellasgården all year round. I went there in the winter to go ice skating and have a sauna. After the sauna I jumped into a hole in the ice to cool down.

How do you reach Hellasgården?

Hellasgården is only 20 minutes away from the center of Stockholm. Take bus 401, direction Älta, to Slussen. (They are still working on Slussen. when I was there, bus 401 stopped on platform ‘X’) Get off at the stop ‘Hellasgården’. This bus runs very regularly. Check the SJ app for the correct timetable. You can also buy your bus ticket via this app. No tickets are available on the bus. From the bus stop you just follow the crowd. You will see the building of the local sports club immediately.

Hellasgarden winter - view from the bus stop

You can also walk to the nature reserve. I returned on foot and Google Maps showed me a pleasant route via a walking path along the water. From Hellasgården to Södermalm it is about 5 km. It is a hilly walk but just being in nature, gives a lot of energy too. There are many nice cafes on Södermalm where you can replenish your energy level. I myself stopped at Älskade Traditioner for a milkshake or a freak shake like they call it!

What can you do in Hellasgården in winter?

As mentioned, you can relax all year round in Hellasgården. There are activities that go on throughout the year, others are mainly for the summer and while I was there on a cold January day, I’d like to tell you a bit more about Hellasgården in the winter.

Hellasgarden Storstugan

Tip: Especially on weekends it can get very busy. It’s best to arrive pretty early. In the winter months, dusk starts at 2:30 pm. Something to take into account if you plan to skate, walk, … for a long distance. 

Ice skating
Hellasgarden skating

Almost everyone on the bus got off at the stop of the nature reserve. Most of them came to skate on the lake, Källtorpsjön. There was a long queue at the house where they rent ice skates. It was quite busy on the frozen lake. Whole family’s tied up the skates. Others had more adventurous plans and planned a real skating tour along the different parts of the lake.

Hellasgarden in winter: skating on natural ice

Ice skating on natural ice is not without danger. Inform yourself and check with locals who have experience with skating on natural ice where to go and how to do it safely. Don’t forget your safety equipment. A demonstration of how to use that safety material is available in this video.

Cross-country skiing and sledding

When it snows, Hellasgården also offers cross-country skiing. They have a beautiful and varied track. Children love the place for sledding. In the absence of snow, they just go on the ice with their sled.

Hellasgarden winter slee on the ice

Bastu

You can also come here for an authentic Swedish sauna experience. For only 65 SEK you can enjoy the sauna (in Swedish they call this ‘bastu‘). After the sauna, you can dive into Lake Källtorpsjön for some refreshment. Yes, even if it is freezing cold. When the lake is frozen, they make a hole in the ice. I can testify: it is a wonderful feeling to immerse yourself in the ice-cold water after the bastu. A unique sensation that you simply have to experience when you are in Sweden!

Bastu in Hellasgarden

Please note that bathing clothes are prohibited in this sauna. That’s also the reason why there are no pictures of me ice-dipping.

Other popular activities in Hellasgården in the winter are the utegyms (outdoor gyms), mountain biking, jogging or powerwalking , … You can warm up again around the barbecue where the Swedes grilled their sausages or (prince) korv or in Storstugan where they have sandwiches and fika bread to serve.

BBQ Hellasgarden

Do you dare to jump into the ice-cold water after the sauna? Or do you prefer to use ice skates?